We all know what it’s like to be stuck in a creative rut. When you keep using the same poses and every session starts looking the same to you. Suzy Brown figured out how to break that rut and shot this amazingly beautiful and out of the box family session at home. I love how natural the family looks and how it really tells a story of their life and who they are right now instead of a series of posed portraits in a beautiful field.
“For this session I used my Contax 645 with an 80mm lens, and a Nikon F5 with a 28mm prime lens on it. I was feeling like I was in a huuuuge creative rut, and asked my friend, Henna if I could shoot her family. I told her to just wear something that gives her a lot of joy and for the whole family, something that is so ‘them,’ but don’t worry about wearing anything overly fancy. I came over in the morning and I started off asking Mateo if he could paint me something since his water colors were already sprawled out on the table. That lasted about two seconds and he was like nope, I want to go outside. So we went outside and I just kinda followed his lead and well, that’s pretty much how the session went. I think I’ve decided most that I do the best when I don’t come up with a plan ahead of time. I used to think that made me more prepared but now I realize I’d just get caught up in what I wanted to do and not the natural flow of the family.”
Some tips to break a creative rut:
1. Put down your camera and pick up a paint brush or a pen or an instrument. Tuning into a different sort of medium for your creativity can help spark a new wave of creativity.
2. Don’t get paid to shoot. Pick clients who are your dream clients and offer to shoot for free — just for the fun of it. Let them know what to expect and then go for it. Taking away the $$ can free your creativity and take away any pressure or expectations holding you back.
3. Do an exercise. Pick a theme – all negative space shots or all candids. Concentrating on just one thing helps to really free up your creativity.
4. Same thing with gear. Strip down. One film. One camera. One lens. Make it as simple as possible technology wise and your creativity will soar.